July 25, 2024

University becomes ‘crime scene’ as part of immersive learning experience

Wrexham Glyndwr University (WGU) became the scene of a crime for a day as part of an annual learning simulation event.

Students and lecturers from across the university, as well as applicants, came together to uncover ‘a crime’ – relating to a fictional high-risk missing person case – as part of WGU’s annual Crime Scene Day.

Students on the Policing, Criminology, Law, Forensic Science and Psychology degrees took part in the day, which involved scene setting and various CSI and intelligence briefings, as well as discussions around the main hypotheses. Various simulated body-cam footage of interviews, as well as dash-cam videos, were shown throughout the day, created by students on the university’s Media Production degree.

Psychology students also discussed the profile of the ‘victim’ and ‘suspects’.

During the afternoon, the exercise became a ‘murder investigation’ – with students from the Forensic Science degree course called in to Tŷ Dysgu – a house on campus that was purchased by the university last year for academic use – to analyse the house for evidence as Policing students searched to determine what had taken place.

The simulation ended with a happy resolution as the missing person was discovered safe and well, which lecturers opted for to demonstrate that cases do not always end in tragedy.


Andy Crawford, Senior Lecturer in Policing at WGU, said: “The Crime Scene Day is always a real highlight of the academic year here at WGU. As retired police officers, we work hard as a team to develop immersive, scenario-based learning as part of the Policing degree.

“These kinds of exercises are not only extremely valuable as a learning experience but they are also memorable for the students and applicants.

“It’s also a great way of instilling that cross-discipline working from the onset, as many of our students are looking to pursue a career in criminal justice, and once they are professionals in the field, they will need to be accustomed to working with colleagues across the various disciplines, so it’s great that we’ve been able to bring in elements of all those courses as part of this event.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank colleagues from across the various subjects for working tirelessly to make this day happen, as well as our brilliant students, who completely threw themselves into the scenario.”


Mark Williams, Superintendent in North Wales Police, was also on-hand throughout the day to provide students and applicants with guidance.

He said: “It was fantastic to be part of the day and see how engaged students and applicants were with the ‘case’. From my perspective really, I was there to guide and advise particularly in relation to interviewing and evidence gathering.

“It was also an opportunity for students to understand things from a senior policing point of view, as well as the part we play within the wider investigation.”


Third-year Policing student, Katy Bell, who is also a Special Constable with North Wales Police alongside her studies, said: “I’ve played a pretty active role in the event – from being in the incident room, to conducting searches and door-to-door enquiries, as well as arresting a suspect and interviewing. It’s been fantastic to be a part of.

“It’s hands-on learning experiences like this that solidify why I want to go into Policing as a career. Days like this are also brilliant from an applicant perspective as it gives them an insight into what it’s like to study Policing at WGU.”